Washington’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate fell to a record low of 3.9% in January, the Employment Security Department said Wednesday. That compared to a 4.3% jobless rate in December.
The state’s economy gained 6,800 jobs, following on a revised gain of 12,300 jobs in December. According to an ESD statement, sectors showing strong hiring were led by retail trade, up 3,300 jobs; leisure and hospitality, up 2,300 jobs; professional & business services, up 1,900 jobs; and information, up 1,200 jobs. The four industry sectors that posted losses were construction, down 3,500 jobs; other services, down 600 jobs; wholesale trade, down 200 jobs; and financial activities, down 100 jobs.
The statewide labor force shrank in January by 1,600 people, to 3,955,200. In the Seattle/Bellevue/Everett region, however, the labor force decreased by 5,100 over the same period.